Adoptive Families, the award-winning national adoption magazine, is the leading adoption information source for families before, during, and after adoption.


"Dear Friends and Family"

If you're adopting, use the following letters as guides when composing your own.

Sample letter for families adopting internationally
"We want to share some very exciting news: we will be adopting a baby from _____!

Why write a letter? We chose to share this news in a letter to give you some time to digest it. We're also sure that you will have some questions. We hope to answer several of them right here. If you have any others, please ask!

Why are we adopting? This is not a sudden decision. Many of you know that we have been struggling with infertility for some time now. We have been discussing adoption for several months, and have determined that it is the way for us to have the family we desire. We have put a lot of thought and research into this decision, and now we need your support.

Why _____? We have discussed several different countries, as well as domestic adoption, but feel that _____ is the right choice for us. We ultimately chose this country because we both liked the standard of medical care children receive [we've both studied and appreciated the culture; ___'s ancestry can be traced back to this country or region; the process seemed like the most clear-cut and efficient one to us; etc.]. After we decided on _____, we both felt such peace about our decision, and know it's where our baby will be born. We have given much thought to the fact that we'll become a multicultural family. We've already decided that we'd like to preserve part of our baby's ____ name, and we will celebrate his/her ____ culture as he/she grows. We hope you look forward to learning about it, too.

How does the process work? The adoption process will take time. Right now we are working on our homestudy. We've been meeting with a social worker who will complete a report on our family. After the homestudy is complete, our agency will send the package (called a “dossier”) to [the country]. We chose our adoption agency because it's been placing children for decades [it's local; we got a good feeling from our first informational meeting; a friend used this agency, etc.]. After the dossier is sent to ____, we should receive our “referral,” which will include information about our child and a photo, in about 12 months [six months; two years; etc.]. Roughly three months later, we'll travel to ____ to meet our child and bring him/her home. The trip will last about one week. The timeline of the adoption process can always change, due to unforeseen circumstances in our country or in _____. We appreciate your support and understanding along the way, and we promise we'll keep you updated!"


Sample letters for families adopting domestically
Version 1
"Many of you know that we have struggled with infertility for years, and have faced many complications along the way. After all that heartbreak, we're happy to announce that we've decided to adopt a baby. We may continue trying to have a biological baby, but we'd like to give my body time to rest before undergoing in-vitro fertilization.

We've completed our homestudy, and all the paperwork, and are waiting for a birthmother to choose us to be her baby's family. We'll most likely bring our baby home from the hospital (although we'll have to stay in the baby's birth state for up to two weeks while paperwork between our two states is finalized).

Our adoption will be semi-open, at the very least, meaning that the birthmother will choose us, and we'll keep in touch through letters and photos after placement. We hope that knowing that her baby is happy, healthy, and loved will reinforce the good decision that she made.

We know that adoption may feel a little scary, especially if you don't know much about it. We've enclosed a list that explains some of the terminology that is now used. You can, of course, find a lot of information about adoption on the Internet—but you may also encounter those who don't support adoption.

The waiting period is a lot like a pregnancy, except that we have no idea how long it will last. We could be chosen next week, or it could take several years for the right birthmother to come along. In the meantime, your support will mean a lot to us. We're excited about starting our family, and hope you'll welcome our baby with open arms when he or she finally arrives!"

Version 2
"We'd like to announce that we are very excited to be starting the adoption process. After three years of infertility, including surgeries, expensive treatments, and a very sad miscarriage, we are happy to be moving on to something that will have a positive ending.

We are happy to share this with everyone now because we finally have happy news to share. If you have any questions about our infertility and/or the adoption process, please feel free to ask! If you have any "advice," please carefully consider sharing that. No, we will NOT get pregnant now that we are adopting. It has not been easy to see friends and family get pregnant easily and go on to give birth, especially those babies due around what would have been our due dates. I hope everyone can understand that at least a little. Please just share your happiness with us.

Our homestudy is scheduled for this Friday. It is the second step in the adoption process. (The first was sending in a big check with the application.) If anyone has any great pictures of us that they think would look good in our 'dear prospective birthmother' profile, please send them to us!"

+ Read more about announcing your decision to friends, family, and coworkers.

+ See real families' adoption announcements.

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